Plague – China
One case of the bubonic plague in Inner Mongolia autonomous region of China with patient in critical condition.
The patient is a 55-year-old from Ordos, Inner Mongolia receiving treatment in Yinchuan, the capital of Ningxia.
The Ningxia government initiated a level IV emergency response to prevent the spread of the plague.
Photo: Yersinia pestis, Direct Fluorescent Antibody Stain
Plague is an infectious disease caused by the bacterium Yersinia pestis. Symptoms include fever, weakness and headache. Usually this begins one to seven days after exposure. In the bubonic form there is also swelling of lymph nodes, while in the septicemic form tissues may turn black and die, and in the pneumonic form shortness of breath, cough and chest pain may occur.
Bubonic and septicemic plague are generally spread by flea bites or handling an infected animal. The pneumonic form is generally spread between people through the air via infectious droplets.
Plague has historically occurred in large outbreaks, with the best known being the Black Death in the 14th century which resulted in greater than 50 million dead.
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